Creating a Successful #Hashtag Campaign on Twitter• Apr 26
Hashtag campaigns bring social visibility to promotions and are useful for increasing a products top of mind awareness. Building on Martin's recent article about Twitter hashtags, in this article I'll share tips on starting your own hashtag campaign, including examples of past successes.
Hashtags (a hashtag is a unique phrase preceded by #) are a way of grouping tweets about a certain topic. If a Twitter user clicks on a hashtag, Twitter shows the list of tweets containing that hashtag. It sounds simple, and it is. Various campaigns have proven that the very simple concept can have tangible benefits.
By including a relevant hashtag, you reach a broader audience, while at the same time narrowing your audience to those interested in the specific topic. Additionally, the probability of your tweet being re-tweeted goes up, as more interested people will see your tweet and be prompted to share it.
The concept behind a hashtag is simple. Creating a hashtag campaign is a bit more involved. The task now becomes to start a conversation about your product. Edwin Huertas gives examples in his article on Social Media Today including one featuring Domino’s Pizza in the UK. Domino's started a hashtag campaign slashing a penny off of the price of the featured flavor each time someone tweeted the hashtag #letsdolunch within a specified time frame. The campaign generated 85,000 tweets and created many happy consumers who ate the pizza at a highly discounted rate. Radio Shack started a campaign that got over 80,000 mentions by asking people to tweet #kindofabigdeal.
Those two campaigns are good examples hashtags to choose. Neither one mentions the company name in the tag, but instead uses a nuanced phrase that someone could write unintentionally because it is already relevant to users. You can check out more detailed examples of successful hashtag campaigns on Mashable.
There are a few things to consider when starting your own campaign: firstly, be tactful in your choice of hashtag. A hashtag like #shopatbestbuy will not likely take off.
Choose something witty, easy to remember, quick to type, and make sure there is not a similar hashtag already in existence with a different meaning. Once you’ve chosen your hashtag, add its meaning to online tools like Tagdef to claim it as your own and help people understand the context.
To lift the campaign off of the ground, begin by tweeting (in moderation) your own hashtag and explain the meaning of it. You can set up an automatic alert tool that sends you an email when someone tweets your hashtag on programs like Twilert to help you monitor activity.
Lastly, promote your hashtag promotions through other marketing outlets, such as signs in your store, an online newsletter, or traditional advertising. Consider supplementing these activities with other online promotions, as Ben and Jerry did, using YouTube to explain their promotion of Fair Trade Day.
National brands often excel in hashtag campaigns more than local businesses because the conversation is relevant to more users on Twitter. However, hashtag campaigns can work at all scales as long as you know how to reach your community.
Written by Kristine Colosimo
Marketing and Management Coordinator A-Side Worldwide
Ready to kick your social media into high gear?
Email Martin Smith, Social Strategist, A-Side Worldwide
Digital Marketing Strategy, Social Media, Web & Facebook App Development
A-Side develops custom web applications for campaign microsites and social media platforms like Facebook.
A taste of some work we’ve done. We’ve helped them exceed their goals, now let us help you.
Various brands that A-Side Worldwide has helped become more popular, entertaining, social and engaging.